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fad diets

The No Diet Diet for 2015

http://www.dreamstime.com/royalty-free-stock-image-old-bathroom-scale-image24205556It’s the New Year and most certainly we can expect to be bombarded with all sorts of diets and folks setting New Year’s resolutions.

Sure, much of my work is with weight loss, though here’s the kicker, I actually de-emphasize the scale. More importantly, it’s the lifestyle and behavioral changes that ultimately will provide my clients with the abundant energy and life of their dreams. The phrase the no diet diet came to my mind. (Darn, it’s already taken.)

Diets have been around for centuries. Why do people diet? If dieting worked, wouldn’t everyone that went on one be skinny? Of course! In reality it’s quite the contrary. Continue reading

Gluten-free: The real reason it might help. PLUS! a gluten-free comparison

It’s amazing how many people are experts in nutrition. I was at a seminar last Saturday—totally unrelated to nutrition. (WordPress if you must know—I guess I’m a nerd at heart. Yep, spent a beautiful day geeking out indoors.)

Since I like to be a walking billboard wearing my Neily on Nutrition t-shirt I struck up a conversation with a woman visiting from California. As many people are prone to do, she shared a story of a friend.

The stories usually always start a certain way. I love them. Her friend read a book. Ah yes. And now they’re an authority on the diet du jour. Continue reading

Why diets don’t work (or do they?) Paleo, gluten-free, low carb

Diets often do work. On any given day 100 million Americans are dieting. Diets frequently help people lose weight, albeit temporarily. How many people do you know went on the Atkins diet? Did they lose weight? Perhaps. Did they keep the weight off? Likely not. Why? It’s not sustainable. But, it’s simple.  All you have to do is stop eating carbohydrates. That’s it! But is it the baked potato that’s the bad evil creature? Or is it the company it keeps? Can’t have a baked potato without the butter, sour cream, cheese, and bacon. Is it the pasta or the quantity of pasta served at a restaurant or filled on a plate at home—equivalent to 6-7 slices of bread.  Continue reading

6 simple tips to eat healthier now

Eating better may not be as hard as you think. An overhaul of the diet isn’t necessary – just start doing one thing at a time. (Prefer to watch versus read? Look below for video.)

Here are 6 simple tips for healthy eating – one tip at a time and you’ll be eating healthier before you know it!

  1. Double the number of vegetables on your plate and downsize the starchy carbs. Save 75% if not more of your caloric intake.
  2. Buy fruits & veggies on sale or at least when in season; they will be much less expensive. You can always buy frozen and have them year around – fruits and vegetables. They’re often just as nutritious as their fresh counterparts.
  3. Go meatless on Monday or at least one day of the week. You will save the saturated fats in your diet, increase fiber AND you will be helping the environment. Check out www.MeatlessMondays.com
  4. Drain and rinse canned beans first and cut sodium content by about 40%.
  5. If you eat rice, make sure you eat brown rice or wild rice which are both whole grains. And you will be getting more vitamins and minerals as well as more fiber than its white counterpart.
  6. If you do dairy, make sure you are drinking nonfat or skimmed milk or soy milk. And if you drink whole milk (which btw is 3.25%), then you may want to switch to 2% first before ultimately going to nonfat or skimmed milk. Nutritionally, they are all the same except for the saturated fat and the calories in them. And if you don’t like that ‘blue water’ then you may want to switch to lactose-free milk or organic milk, which have a much richer consistency than regular nonfat milk. I think you will enjoy it more!

Diet myth #3 with Shelley Rael – Fact or fiction? Carbs are bad for you

This is third in the series of six myths that Shelley Rael and I talked about in Philadelphia at the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Food and Nutrition Conference & Expo in October. To watch the video click here or scroll to the bottom of the post.

Diet myth #3 with Shelley – Fact or fiction? Carbs are bad for you

The term "natural" is applied to man...

Neily: This is Neily on Nutrition!  I’m with Shelley Rael, a private practice dietitian from Albuquerque, New Mexico. We’re talking about diet myth number 3. And that is…?
Shelley: That carbs are fattening.
Neily: Alright.
Shelley: People say they cut out carbs because carbs make them fat. I tell people all the time nutrition is not black and white. There are many things that are involved. By themselves, carbohydrates are not fattening; they are not higher in calories than other foods. Per gram they’re actually lower in calories compared to fat.What happens is that people say I cut out carbs, I lost a lot of weight and well, you know they cut out the sugar, the candy, the sodas, the refined carbohydrates. The plant-based carbohydrates—the fruits and vegetables—are not the carbs that are making people fat. If you have five oranges you wouldn’t be fat.The other thing I tell people is that when you cut out the carbs, you’re losing a lot of water. Carbs and water are best friends, “BFFs”. So when the carbs are gone, you lose a lot of water. But as soon as you have a piece of toast, all that water comes back and the weight fluctuates.So, on one hand yes, cutting out carbs can help you lose weight but that will happen with any food that you cut off altogether.
Neily: Yes, it comes down to the calories.
Shelley: Right, and it’s also the quality of the carbohydrates. Again calories are calories, but when you are having good calories, the healthier calories so to speak whether they are carbs or fat or protein, it’s going to be healthier and better than having the refined, processed junk which tend to be carbs.Sugar sugar
Neily: All carbohydrates are plant-based foods—the fruits, the vegetables, the whole grains—and then you’ve got your refined carbohydrates. American Heart Association has the recommendation for six teaspoons of added sugar per day for women and nine teaspoons for men. That’s what 24 and 36 grams (respectively).Also one of the things people are quick to look at is the sugar on the label. Just because it has sugar (doesn’t mean you shouldn’t eat it). Something might be a yogurt and it has sugar in it but that’s from the lactose from the milk… I get that a lot.
Shelley: I get that a lot too. I help people learn that the label where it says sugars does not distinguish between added and naturally occurring sugars. So I tell them, look at the ingredient list and if it’s sugar or corn syrup or pure cane syrup or honey or molasses or any of those many aliases of added sugar. There is still no way to know how many grams of sugar are added or naturally   occurring but the lower that sugar is on the list of ingredient list—or not there at all—the better that’s going to be.That’s the frustrating part with the labels.
Neily: That’s why people come to see registered dietitians to learn these things!
Shelley: Exactly. We can teach them.
Neily: Right. Thank you Shelley. Thanks for watching Neily on Nutrition and we’ll see you in the next video!

 

Diet Myth #2 with Shelley Rael, MS, RD – White foods: to eat or not to eat?

various potato dishes: potato chips, hashbrown...

various potato dishes: potato chips, hashbrowns, tater tots, baked potato, and mashed potatoes (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Diet myth #2 with Shelley Rael, MS, RD:  “You shouldn’t eat white foods” (or should you?)

Shelley Rael, registered dietitian in private practice from Albuquerque, New Mexico and I had the chance to catch up in Philadelphia during the annual Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. We discussed six diet myths—here was the second one. (To see the video, scroll to the bottom or click here.)

Shelley: This one is kind of twofold. People say they cut out white foods. I hear people say I stopped these white foods and I lost all this weight. And what I think most people are referring to is the refined grains, the refined white bread—which by the way, I would never give up ever. Like ever. I look forward to that.
Neily: Yes
Shelley: White rice, white potatoes—that’s what a lot of people are referring to. I hate that all these white foods are clumped together. As I say, it’s discriminating. Of course, we want brown foods—brown rice, and the whole grain bread but there are a lot of white foods that are really good for you. Potatoes are not evil but people think they are. Onions, leeks, garlic, cauliflower—those are white foods that are good for you. People are like, you know what I mean. But I just want to clarify that we cannot just put this one color on the hit list so to speak. When I talk about potatoes there are a few parts about potatoes that I mention. You know they’re great sources of vitamins and fiber. It’s what we DO to the potatoes.
Neily: Exactly. How is it dressed? The company it keeps.
Shelley: What we eat with the potatoes. Mashed potatoes—I’ve made healthier versions of mashed potatoes. But people talk about the stick of butter and the cream they use in mashed potatoes—that’s what makes potatoes go to the far side, the dark side.
Neily: A loaded baked potato—you’ve got bacon, cheese, sour cream, butter and it all adds up….
Shelley: Add a little bit of chives for the veggies. And have it with a 20 ounce steak. Or French fries—the No 1 vegetable in this country. French fries and ketchup is No 2 as a vegetable. You know French fries and ketchup are the No.1 and No. 2 sources of fruits and vegetables in the country. That’s not what we want to do. It’s not the fact that it’s white as much as it’s fried, with a lot of salt.
Neily: Right. So it’s okay to eat white food. Thanks Shelley! Thanks for watching Neily on Nutrition and we’ll see you in the next video.

Do you need a sports dietitian? Dave Ellis, sports RD, answers

Dave Ellis pic

Why do athletes need a sports RD? A message from sports dietitian Dave Ellis

Dave Ellis and I had a chance to talk recently when he was in town for an EAS Sports Performance seminar at Athletes’ Performance Training Center. (To watch the video, scroll to bottom or click here.)

Neily: I’m with Dave Ellis, veteran sports dietitian and we’re at the Athletes’ Performance in Frisco, Texas. I have the privilege of interviewing Dave because he is here for a seminar. So, let’s talk a little about sports nutrition. Why are dietitians so important in the world of sports?
Dave: I think there is no shortage of nutrition advice out there when it comes to athletes but very few people can bring food to life and give it value like dietitians. That’s what they are specially good at. So, at the end of the day, athletes’ success is really built around whether they are eating properly, whether their meal patterns are appropriate. And you can have the best supplement systems in the world but at the end of the day, under-fueled athletes are very vulnerable. That’s what sports RDs do—bring home that food first message.
A diet rich in soy and whey protein, found in ...

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Neily:  Excellent. What do you see is the biggest challenge when you first start working with an athlete?

Dave:  Well, a lot of them have been eating on the fly their whole life. Multi-sport athletes probably didn’t grow up in the “Beaver-Cleaver” house with meals every night at home as a family. So they’ve been eating on the fly and eating at drive-thrus. Some of them don’t even know how to eat fresh produce. It is the weak link in their diet. We have bad quality meals with no fresh produce and we have very poor meal patterns—there is meal skipping going on. They don’t have much of an appetite in the morning. At a very fundamental level between their sleep, their meal patterns and the quality of the meals they have, we have our hands full.

Neily:  That’s great information. What would be the take home message for somebody listening? Just one thing that you can tell somebody that would be most important, you think.

Dave:  For the athlete, my advice would be don’t reach for some dietary supplement  when you don’t have the fundamentals buttoned up. If your sleep and your diet quality and diet pattern and your lifestyle are all frazzled at the ends, don’t think a dietary supplement is going to patch everything up for you. I have seen too many young athletes fall prey to that thinking

Neily:  Great advice—thanks!  Dave can be reached at www.DaveEllisBio.com Thank you for watching Neily on Nutrition and we’ll see you in the next video.

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